Magne Dæhli was born with sport enforcement genes running through his veins. After a season of excellence, he just missed an individual medal in the World Championships. But the motivation is high and the goals for 2017 are set, as we can see in this interview to the Portuguese Orienteering Blog.
I would start by asking you to present yourself.
Magne Dæhli (M. D.) - I was born in Løten and I live in Halden. I'm almost a professional athlete, but I have a small job in Halden SK, where I work with accounting. I like to relax with some movies or tv-series; otherwise, I'm not so handy, so I don't like to work with the house. About hobbies, I don't have none, really.
I believe that the family was one of the main reasons to get you start doing Orienteering. Could you tell me something about the first steps and the “pressure” of being son of Sigurd Dæhli?
Magne Dæhli (M. D.) - Yes, I was introduced to orienteering from the day I was born, so it has always had a natural place in my life. In the beginning I wasn't really interested in orienteering and, as most kids, I wanted to be a soccer player. But there was never any pressure from my father, he supported my choices. And, with time, I started to be more interested in endurance sports, and specially in orienteering and cross-country skiing. I think the reason for selecting orienteering was that I felt most at home there.
What was the best advice you received from your father?
M. D. - I guess that must be to believe in my dream.
I'm sure that your WOC gold medal with the Norwegian Relay team this year is your biggest achievement so far. Knowing that your father got the gold in the same race 35 years ago, did your win have a special taste?
M. D. - Yes, it was a very special day, and a great moment to cross the finish line together with Carl [Godager Kaas] and Olav [Lundanes] as World Champions. But I haven't thought that much about me and my father being in the same situation.
What about the week in Strömstad?
M. D. - It was stable, with two top 6 races. But I'm still a bit disappointed, since my goal was to take an individual medal.
Besides the gold in the Relay, you got two silver medals in the European Championships, again in the Relay and also in the Long Distance. When we talk about 2016, are we talking about your best season so far?
M. D. - Yes, absolutely.
If I asked you to choose the biggest Orienteering achievement of the season, what would it be?
M. D. - Olav's race at WOC long.
Still Sigurd (laughs). Being your father a talented Trail-orienteer, I'm curious to know if you have ever tried this discipline and how was it?
M. D. - I've tried it, but I'm not a big fan. Without the physical element I wouldn't have been an orienteering runner.
We have now a long break until the first big competitions in 2017. Do you have already designed some plans for the winter season? Are we going to see you again in Portugal next year?
M. D. - The planning isn't clear yet. But I'll be, for sure, in Spain and Portugal several times in January and February. I think I'm going to the Portugal O Meeting.
What would be your ultimate achievement in 2017? How do you plan to manage this challenge?
M. D. - I really want an individual WOC medal. To achieve that I need to increase my technical level.
Anything else you’d like to share?
M. D. - The next months are the best time for night orienteering and that's a good way to work with the technical basics. So I will do a lot of night trainings this winter.